Topic: Finding Jewish Metrical Records in the Polish National Archives
(Society Meetings – Zoom Only - 1:30 PM EST)
This online event is free for members of JGSGW. Nonmembers may register (Add to Cart) to attend for a fee of $5.
Program Description: This presentation looks at the holdings of the Polish National Archives, including records from places that have been within Poland’s current borders for centuries, as well as those that were created in Poland for places now in other countries but are still within the Polish archives, including records from Belarus, Ukraine, Slovakia, Germany, and others.
Changes in civil administrations, borders, and languages are nothing new to researchers in Eastern Europe. When it comes to vital records, more commonly known in Europe as metrical records, finding these birth, marriage, and death records becomes quite complex. Recent records are probably in institutions within the current country, but older records could be in the archives of any country that at one time owned the place where the events took place.
While some older records have been “repatriated” to the country of origin or to the current country, many reside where they have been for decades or centuries. For example, Ukraine has sent to Poland many records of places that were part of Poland but are now in Ukraine. Poland has sent to Lithuania and Belarus records of places that were in Poland but are now in those countries. Hungary has embarked on a repatriation project for archival records that originated in other countries. However, the repatriation of data is not complete, nor is it systematic, and so many records still reside in their original archives.
This presentation will focus on Jewish metrical records in the Polish National Archives and how to locate them. It will include tips on how to search the Polish National Archives website(s) efficiently for these records. In addition, it will cover many Polish genealogical websites that include information about records that are within the Polish National Archives collection, in some cases including name indexes and/or scans.
Speaker: Mary Ann Evan got her start in genealogy at a young age by listening to the stories told by her grandparents about “the old country.” In the 1980s she began tracing their paths back to their ancestral villages in Poland, and has since then visited all four of those villages and has found living relatives in three of them. She also made several research trips to other Eastern European countries.
Mary Ann has been volunteering at the Washington, DC, Family Search Center, in Kensington, Maryland, for nearly 35 years, specializing in Eastern European countries but also assisting persons researching in many other areas of the world. She has made presentations at local family history conferences and meetings, and is presently facilitating an Eastern European Special Interest Group, begun in 2014, at the Family Search Center.
Speaker: Harry Moatz, an attorney, retired from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office about 12 years ago where he was the Director of Enrollment and Discipline. He always had an interest in the origins of his family, beginning his search for the facts about eight years ago. Harry's fraternal family came from an area of Galicia now located in northwest Ukraine. His maternal family came from Galicia and an area of Russia, now Belarus. His wife’s family came from Galicia. The families of his son-in-law and daughter-in-law hail from Great Britain, Scandinavia, Galicia, and Hungary. He has discussed his research with family, colleagues, friends, and genealogy organizations. His research led him to create the Digital Resource Database From JGSGW.
By the way, Harry Moatz is the current President of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Greater Washington.